f resistance, of joy, of bittersweet interactions with these objects. As my family has risen to be middle class in the States, a lot of these objects are being thrown out or boxed up into a garage or attic. When the objects move there, we lose these important places we have carved out for ourselves individually and collectively. We come to the wall hangings, photographs, at the saints above each doorway in times of need. For release. Whether no one else is home or if everyone’s home in their own rooms with doors shut. I want to present these objects in a timeline with media from the internet and archives such as home movies and photographs. They don’t end up changing much, I want them to retain their hidden histories and functions. Biblical wall hangings, like the one in Happy El Salvador, are some of the objects that I’ve used that are among the most emotional for me. I think my family is one that mourns in privacy, away from one another. In isolation. In a hallway. These kind of wall hangings all have verses from the Bible and they always have to do with familial love, patience, endurance. They’re reminders which I find
family members reading to themselves. I read those words and it’s the words of my sister, of myself, of my mother. I don’t think you can look at the Bible verses on the wall hanging at face value, they are linked to my family’s history of war, migration and separation. CVM: In previous conversations you have mentioned to me that, not only is the decoration inside Salvadoran homes about selecting objects for their beauty, but that objects also tell histories that are otherwise rendered unspeakable because of anti blackness, of anti-indigenous attitudes, of homophobia, and of patriarchy. Would you care to expand on that? OD: In El Salvador, we’ve had colonization and a steady stream of dictators in place which have consistently committed genocide against indigenous people. There is this popular myth that all indigenous people in the country vanished after a massacre in 1932 for example (this leads into the inaccurate statistic about only 1% of Salvadorans are native. This was done by those in power toying with the census and creating fear among people to name themselves on record as native because of the history of genocide).
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